Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Philippians 2:3-4

Friday, January 29, 2016

Joyful World SAL- February

Hi friends! I have completed February in the Joyful World SAL by Snowflower Diaries. Here the ducks are out in the snow.
I stitched this one over one on 25ct Driftwood Dublin linen. I adore the tininess of it. I used DMC and the orange is from VMSS. I did change several colors. I gave the hen her white-bordered blue patch on her wing.
I made the violets the colors of Wisconsin Wood Violets.
I will go back and get January done, but first I am stitching another piece for February. And then I will need to stitch up Palko's February chart.

I have finished reading Secrets of a Charmed Life by Susan Meissner.

Current day, Oxford, England. Young American scholar Kendra Van Zant, eager to pursue her vision of a perfect life, interviews Isabel McFarland just when the elderly woman is ready to give up secrets about the war that she has kept for decades...beginning with who she really is. What Kendra receives from Isabel is both a gift and a burden--one that will test her convictions and her heart.

1940s, England. As Hitler wages an unprecedented war against London’s civilian population, hundreds of thousands of children are evacuated to foster homes in the rural countryside. But even as fifteen-year-old Emmy Downtree and her much younger sister Julia find refuge in a charming Cotswold cottage, Emmy’s burning ambition to return to the city and apprentice with a fashion designer pits her against Julia’s profound need for her sister’s presence. Acting at cross purposes just as the Luftwaffe rains down its terrible destruction, the sisters are cruelly separated, and their lives are transformed…

What a good book! This is the fourth book by Susan I have read this year already. I am on a waiting list at the library for her latest book. Reading has been competing with my stitching.

I had the MRI done. I now wait to see the spine orthopedic surgeon on Monday. I am hoping for answers and NOT surgery. I have learned over these last weeks that the pain and pressure are unbearable if I go off of the muscle relaxers. Since I have the go-ahead to stitch again, I am!

 “In His unbounded love, God became what we are that He might make us what He is.” —St. Irenaeus 

Stitching and praying,
Vickie

Friday, January 22, 2016

I Am Stitching

Hi friends! I stitched up the January freebie from Palko. I have this wood shadow box or cubby shelf. I want to fill it up with treasures. And so I began.
January is stitched one over one using DMC B5200 on Wedgewood Blue 25ct lugana.

I am now stitching on the February Snowflower Diaries SAL.

I have finished reading A Fall Of Marigolds by Susan Meissner. This book dovetails a historical story around a contemporary subplot.

September 1911. On Ellis Island in New York Harbor, nurse Clara Wood cannot face returning to Manhattan, where the man she loved fell to his death in the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire. Then, while caring for a fevered immigrant whose own loss mirrors hers, she becomes intrigued by a name embroidered onto the scarf he carries…and finds herself caught in a dilemma that compels her to confront the truth about the assumptions she’s made. Will what she learns devastate her or free her?

September 2011. On Manhattan’s Upper West Side, widow Taryn Michaels has convinced herself that she is living fully, working in a charming specialty fabric store and raising her daughter alone. Then a long-lost photograph appears in a national magazine, and she is forced to relive the terrible day her husband died in the collapse of the World Trade Towers…the same day a stranger reached out and saved her. Will a chance reconnection and a century-old scarf open Taryn’s eyes to the larger forces at work in her life?

I really liked this one a lot. The 1911 story centers around Ellis Island. We took a family vacation 5 years ago to New York. We were on Ellis Island. Very interesting to learn more about it. I cried once while reading this.

I had a recheck appointment Tuesday with the orthopedic doctor who had ordered the physical therapy. I told him the pain and pressure have not gone away since his exam on December 1st. He put me on prednisolone. This helped greatly the first two days, now not so much. I have a MRI scheduled for next week.

Oh Lord, be my comfort, my courage, and my strength this day.

Thanks for stopping in today. I am so glad you did!

Stitching and praying,
Vickie

Monday, January 18, 2016

Pure Love

Hi friends! A frigid morning here. It is currently -8º with a windchill of -25º. I would love to just stay in today, but I have possibly my last physical therapy session today. The pressure in my neck is mostly gone, but the pain in my neck and shoulders and upper back is still there. It actually slightly worsened after I told you of my improvement on Friday morning. :(  I do have an appointment with the pain management doctor on Wednesday. We shall see what she has to say about this pinched cervical nerve.

So I want to share with you the Christmas ornament I have finally made and given to Brian.
This is Pure Love by The Snowflower Diaries. You can find this pattern in the 2015 JCS Christmas Ornament Issue.
This is stitched one over two on 38 count mystery linen. I used DMC and Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe floss.
I changed the finished shape, shown in the magazine as a rectangle, to a heart. I wanted to stack a heart on top of a heart to show a bit of the lovely red silk I used. The back is also covered in red silk. I used a length of red metallic floss for the hanger.
I am pleased to say he is extremely happy with it. He does not want to pack it up with the Christmas things. He wants to display it for a few months. :)

And now to announce the winner of  Mini Silver Needle Stitches pattern. Jenny! I have emailed you. As soon as I receive your postal address, the pattern will be on it's way to you.

Thank you for stopping in with me today friends. I am so glad you did. Your words of encouragement brighten my day!

Stitching and praying,
Vickie

Friday, January 15, 2016

Cross Stitch Collection

Hi friends! Are you ready for some great news? I have been improving! Twice a week my physical therapist has been helping me work out this pinched nerve. I have been doing my home exercises every day and correcting my posture. The pressure in my neck is almost completely gone now. I do have pains that pop up in my upper back. My therapist told me my next appointment will hopefully be my last one. HOORAY! The last question I asked her was if I can stitch now. Yes I can! She said to stitch for 20 minutes at a time. Then do stretches. I can do that!!

I have something fun to share with you. A handful of my overseas friends have notified me that they have spotted me in the January issue of  Cross Stitch Collection magazine. I was contacted last fall by the magazine and asked several questions.














I trimmed up Murphy's top knot. Now he won't need a full haircut for weeks yet. I gave Miss Mabel the whole works. You know what goes through my head very often when I blow dry her out? ♪ I WILL SURVIVE ♫  You know the '70's song by Gloria Gaynor? Or do you prefer it sung by Diana Ross? I prefer Gloria's version myself. Mabel's hair looks just as glorious as either lady, don't you think?
♫"GO ON NOW GO! WALK OUT THE DOOR!"♫
I finished reading The Girl In The Glass by Susan Meissner. A very good book.  This is the seventh book I have read by this author. She seems to delight in writing dual-time-periods-fiction.

I finished listening to Come Rain Or Come Shine by Jan Karon. I LOVED this! I have read every single one of her books. Listening to this book was great.

In Come Rain or Come Shine, Jan Karon delivers the wedding that millions of Mitford fans have waited for. It’s a June day in the mountains, with more than a few creatures great and small, and you’re invited—because you’re family.

By the way, it’s a pretty casual affair, so come as you are and remember to bring a tissue or two. After all, what’s a good wedding without a good cry?


I baked Challah this week. We love this bread around here.
STITCHING and praying,
Vickie

Monday, January 11, 2016

Giveaway

Hi friends! We are definitely back to our usual winter weather around here. Rats! I kinda loved the mild weather. ;) We had a high of 17º yesterday. It will not even get that warm today. It is currently -4º with a wind chill of -15º. Our snow will be around for quite some time.

I would like to show you the Christmas ornament  that I made for our friend Annette.

This is stitched on 28ct lambswool linen with DMC and Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe flosses. This freebie can be found HERE.

I'm-a-goin'-cuckoo without stitching my friends! Yes, I have several good books to read from the library. I organized my craft bin. I organized my linen bin. I kitted up four cross stitch projects. Argh! I just wanna stitch.

Well, I did find this pattern that I decided I am just never going to stitch.
I am sorry. This one will be offered to my American friends only. You can blame the darn postage for that!
If you would like to own this pattern, you need to be a follower of mine. Please tell me you want to be included in the giveaway in the comments below. This pattern uses Gloriana Autumn Arbour Silk and DMC. The silk is included. None of the DMC is included. The tiniest stork scissors charm I have ever seen (so adorable) is also included.

I will announce the winner on Monday, January 18th.

Giving poodle haircuts and praying,
Vickie




Thursday, January 7, 2016

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to my fellow Orthodox friends!

Here are my orts from 2015. They are sitting atop our non-moving(rather cold here)snow. About 7 inches of it. Those two blades of grass are what the snowblower threw there. I will put these orts out in the Spring for the birds to use in their nest building.
I am still working on my neck and upper back. I am hoping and praying the pain goes away through physical therapy and I won't even need further treatment from an orthopedic doctor. For the first time since I saw the hand and upper extremity orthopedic surgeon months ago, with the exam that brought on this awful neck pain, I felt less pain yesterday and today!! That is progress finally! Merry Christmas indeed!

Reading and praying,
Vickie


Monday, January 4, 2016

Hi friends!

I have begun a new reading list for 2016. I am confident I will not reach my record high of 99 books in one year, like I did last year. The majority of the books read were from the Holy Bible. I do have two books read already this year though. A Sound Among The Trees by Susan Meissner was a very good read. Here is what the book is about: 


A house shrouded in time.
A line of women with a heritage of loss.

As a young bride, Susannah Page was rumored to be a Civil War spy for the North, a traitor to her Virginian roots. Her great-granddaughter Adelaide, the current matriarch of Holly Oak, doesn’t believe that Susannah’s ghost haunts the antebellum mansion looking for a pardon, but rather the house itself bears a grudge toward its tragic past.
When Marielle Bishop marries into the family and is transplanted from the arid west to her husband’s home, it isn’t long before she is led to believe that the house she just settled into brings misfortune to the women who live there.
With Adelaide’s richly peppered superstitions and deep family roots at stake, Marielle must sort out the truth about Susannah Page and Holly Oak— and make peace with the sacrifices she has made for love.

The second book I have read is The Diary of Rywka Lipszyc.  Rywka Lipszyc was a Polish-Jewish teenage girl who wrote a personal diary while in the Łódź Ghetto during the Holocaust in Poland. This is a good book. I must say the first section, The Background, is slow reading. I am extremely interested in all things World War II. My paternal grandfather served in the European Theater during WWII.

I would like to ask for prayer. I am trying not to get down about my neck. It is just that I went in for wrist pain in October. The exam, with all the twisting of my neck, from the orthopedic doctor really wrecked me. I have been in increased pain since. IN MY NECK! Yes, not my wrist. Now my neck is a big problem. I am calling another orthopedic doctor today to make an appointment. He specializes in spines/necks. 
 
I have not stitched in two weeks. And you know what? I am no better for it. I like to read, but I love to stitch.
 
Thanks for listening my friends. I appreciate you.
 
Reading and praying,
Vickie